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Giving Thanks

December 2, 2013

It’s the end of a long weekend and it’s time to gear up for the week ahead.  The Thanksgiving break has provided me with some much-needed time to relax with friends and family, and spend some quality time with the people who mean the most to me.  What is most important about this holiday is that it provides us with a reminder to stop for a moment and appreciate all the gifts that we are blessed with.  For me, the first things that come to mind are my beautiful family, especially my wife and children, as well as my parents, siblings, nieces, nephew and in-laws.  And of course my close friends remain very important to me.  I believe it is also appropriate to stop and reflect on our profession, and express gratitude for the opportunities we have each day to inspire others and work alongside amazing, talented people in the field of education.

I’ve wondered at times how my life would be different had I chosen a different profession.  There can be a tendency in all lines of work to think that the “grass may be greener”.  But we often fail to appreciate the special opportunities that we have in our own profession.  Let me provide a list of some of the things that I am thankful for in my role as a high school principal:

  • For having the opportunity to work with some tremendous kids each and every day.  To be able to witness students develop both as students and as people.  I am very thankful especially for the opportunity to see students gain maturity and self-confidence over the course of four years.
  • For being able to be part of a professional learning community, where I’m able to work alongside a team of talented educators who bring many different perspectives, experiences and ideas.
  • To work alongside people who truly care about the well-being of others.  I feel that most educators are good and decent people by nature, and I’m thankful that I work alongside individuals who put others before themselves.
  • To work with people who enjoy life, and don’t take everything so seriously.  I feel it is important to be able to laugh alongside your co-workers, and I’m fortunate to work with a team who enjoys spending time with each other.
  • To work alongside so many hard-working, dedicated teachers, parents and students who put in long hours, aim for continuous improvement, and focus their energies on making our school better.

Most of all, I’m thankful for the opportunity to lead a high school.  I view this opportunity as a true privilege and a challenge I try to embrace with passion and energy each day.  As educators, I hope we view our work in a positive light.  Despite the challenges and frustrations, we must remember that we are most fortunate to do the work that we do each day, and that the benefits we see far outweigh the drawbacks.  Have a great week!

-Rob

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